February 25, 2011
Marketing and PR agencies sometimes get it horribly wrong. PHD, who are in the biz, have produced a video for other marketing firms which manages to make a whole catalogue of mistakes. Watch and squirm. Seriously though, there’s something here about really not understanding young people, let alone the intended audience, and probably social media as well. It’s also a bit scary!
Warning: Some of the comments following the video are rather rude.
November 13, 2010
Here’s something I’ve only just discovered, the Smiley Face was designed in 1963 as part of a PR campaign to calm things down after a particularly bad-tempered merger between two insurance companies. The creator was Harvey Richard Ball who as we now know hit on a design classic. From its earliest days it became a universal symbol of friendship, peace, happiness and harmony. In fact it’s such a well-recognised symbol that its become an emoticon :)
What does this tell us? Don’t underestimate the power of strong visual imagery, even in places where you would not expect it to have an effect. Sometimes things that are ‘simply done’ and ‘simply understood’ (Richard Ball) can change attitudes, but in a subtle, unconscious way. Just what’s needed when people are out of their comfort zone, or in the case of the companies mentioned earlier, when significant change is afoot.
(R) The Smiley Face is a registered trademark of Franklin Loufrani/Smiley World in the UK and Europe, and of the World Smile Corporation in the US.